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Compensation for Your Loss: Wrongful Death Damages

This content about Wrongful Death Damages was written by a third party and does not represent the views or opinions of Haddad & Sherwin LLP, nor should it be construed as a complete and accurate statement of the law or as legal advice.  For better information about this topic, please contact Haddad & Sherwin LLP.

Each year lots of people suffer the loss of a loved one and are left with the pain of the absence and possibly many other problems as its direct consequence. With wrongful death damages, the law offers remedies for such losses when it can be proven that they were directly derived from intentional or negligent action by a third person.

How Can Your Loss Be Compensated?

The income, benefits, household services, and other monetary benefits you lost can be awarded to a person who files a wrongful death claim. Funeral and burial costs can be recovered, too. These are all called economic damages. Loss of love, companionship, consortium, moral support, guidance, and other moral benefits are on the list as well; these are non-economic damages.

The money awarded for these categories depends on the decision of the judge, taking into consideration factors like the deceased person’s life expectancy at the time of death according to their lifestyle. The life expectancy of the survivors is also considered to achieve a balanced projection of the amount of money that a plaintiff should receive.

What Should Be Proven in a Wrongful Death Case?

The plaintiff must prove that the person, company or institution they’re trying to hold liable for the death had a duty of care to the deceased person and they breached it. For this, they should meet the ‘beyond a reasonable doubt’ burden of proof. In other words, the defendant should be proven to have the responsibility of the deceased person’s life in their hands in one way or another. The plaintiff should present proof of this in any possible way, whether eyewitness testimony, records, and other types of evidence.

What Makes Someone Eligible to Receive Damages?

A direct relationship to the deceased person by blood or the condition of spouse or dependent makes an eligible plaintiff for a wrongful death case. When parents, children, or spouses are not able to make a claim, other relatives or people who were economically dependent on the deceased person can be eligible as plaintiffs. It’s wise to review the conditions in each state since they can vary. As far as the state of California, the spouse, parents, or children are all eligible.

Can a Company Be Sued for Wrongful Death?

As mentioned above, a company or an institution can be held responsible for wrongful death. This is common in cases where the death was produced by a defective product (product liability cases) or the wrong procedures. For accident fatalities, the manufacturing motor company can be held liable. However, keep in mind that if the death occurred at work or as a consequence of a work procedure or task, wrongful death litigation is not the right way to proceed legally. These cases should be channeled through a workers’ compensation system.

Getting Top Legal Advice

If you wish to know whether you have a wrongful death case, you need guidance from top lawyers who are seasoned in the matter of wrongful death. Your chances of having a successful case greatly increase when you receive prompt and complete advice within the correct statute of limitations.

Haddad & Sherwin LLP has a long, successful track record winning wrongful death and other serious civil rights claims for police and jail officer misconduct, throughout Northern and Central California.  Call or email us for a free consultation.

This content was written by a third party and does not represent the views or opinions of Haddad & Sherwin LLP, nor should it be construed as a complete and accurate statement of the law or as legal advice.  For better information about this topic, please contact Haddad & Sherwin LLP.